Saturday, February 09, 2008

More Young Men With Sticks Under the Saturday Sky

Today dawned clear and cool with the promise of warmer weather and no wind. As we piled into the party bus (a.k.a. minivan) at 7:45 a.m., it was 49°F and the sun was rising in the sky. Yes, it was an early morning game, but we were ready for it. Nearly all of the team was present (even the young man with the broken arm on the sideline) and warmed up well before the 9:00 a.m. whistle from the referee. It still took a little while for the team to fully warm up and shake off the pre-game jitters when they saw that they were again facing a team of sixth grade boys. This resulted in the opposing team taking an early 3-0 lead. The parents were concerned, but our boys settled in and made a few goals so that the score at the half was 4-2. The other team was a bit bigger, but that just meant that Young Man had to stretch for the ball.

The parents responsible for the half-time snack flaked so the boys didn't get their customary gummy bears (don't ask, I think they are the head coach's favorite snack), but they didn't let that slow them down. Again, it took some time to get into the game and they were down 5-2 before we knew it. The boys seemed to thrive on being the underdogs and put their hearts (and feet) into the game to bring the score to a 5-5 tie at the end of the second half. Yes, we headed into our third sudden death overtime of the season! As we waited for the boys to come out for overtime, I made predictions on who would play for the last point. As usual, Young Man was there on defense along with his classmate at midfield. Young Man's PE teacher was there to see his very first lacrosse game and was thrilled to see two of his students playing so well as to be put on the field when the game was on the line.

Just like in the last two overtimes, our very determined players gained possession and drove hard for the goal. Unlike the last game, our team didn't make an easy goal. The other team was lined up in formation and blocked the shot on goal. They recovered and made their own play for the goal. Our boys fought hard and fairly, but this time the point went to the other team. The disappointment in the final score was easily tempered with the knowledge that the boys had played well and given it all they had.

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